A lioness found dead in the Gir forest of Gujarat

A lioness was found dead Thursday in the Gir forest of Gujarat, bringing to 30 the number of deaths of big cats since September 30, officials said.

The carcass of the lioness, aged 9 to 12, was found in the Tulsishyam forest range near the border of Amreli district, said Junagadh Wildlife Circle Chief Forest Officer, D. T. Vasavada.

"A preliminary investigation revealed that the cat was dead for natural reasons. The carcass bore no marks of injury, "he told PTI.

The carcass was sent post-mortem to determine the exact cause of death, Vasavada added.

Previously, 29 lions, including cubs, have died in the past three months in and around the Gir Forest as a result of infighting, pneumonia, distemper virus (PCV), and protozoa.

In September, no less than 23 big cats had died in Gir in three weeks.